Google Content Network VS Google Search Network


If you have heard of search engine marketing, I bet that you are very familiar with the search network. Today, Search is crowded with lots of advertisers and the days of getting a click for a few cents is gone. However, do you know that for some industries, it is better to advertise on the Google Content Network (CT) than the Search network? Let me give you a few examples.


Let’s say that you have a client who is in the yoga business. Which strategy do you think suits them better? CT or Search? To answer this question, we first need to understand the demographic of the client’s target audience.


Their target customers aren’t searching because they already know where to shop or hang out. If you bid on the word Yoga on Search, you will only get yoga beginners. You will not get hard-core Yoga practitioners because they would never search the term “Yoga.” This is also true of, for example, people who do Home School, or Martial Arts, music and art lovers, or devout followers of any religious or political cause.


In this case, the Google Content Network is better than search. A yoga business will want to reach hardcore yoga practitioners who hang out in yoga forums, websites for professionals and health related websites. So your conversion rate will be higher if you place your ads on these networks.


Another example is church. Let’s say that a church approaches you to launch a search engine marketing campaign on Google, with the objective of bringing more devout Christians to their church. In this case, advertising on the Google Content Network will perform far better than advertising on the search network.


A devout Christian would hardly ever type “Christianity” into Google. On Google, the word Christianity will only get you high school kids writing research papers. To reach that devout person, you would have to target hundreds or thousands of long-tail phrases, i.e. “purpose driven life by rick warren” or “pope Benedict” to reach her on search.


However, the biggest problem with Search is, if your product or service does not have anything to do with Rick Warren or the Pope, you will get lousy Quality Scores and Google will slap you. On Content, however, you find the places where she hangs out – and Google will help you put something she’s interested in, in front of her. Conversion rates can be high and the cost per acquisition low.


The Content Network is not for everyone. However, Search is tougher on some industries than others. So you may want to find out if Content Network is a match for you.